Located 97km. North-east of the city of Cusco was built during the Incan period, as a fortified area that includes temples, an urban sector, and benched terraces. Two sectors can be distinguished: One denominated “Araqama Ayllu”; an area related to worshipping and religious activities and the other “Qosqo Ayllu” which is a compound of living quarters. Ollantaytambo was an important administrative center that probably also fulfilled military functions, as its traces ancient paths and aqueducts.
Ollantaytambo village is called “Live Incan Village”, as its inhabitants maintain alive very ancient habits and customs. From Ollantaytambo, you can visit the village of Willoc, the inhabitants of which speak Quechua and stand out by the red clothes that identify them as members of a unique and different Ayllu to the rest of the region.
Ollantaytambo’s archaeological area is another monumental masterwork of Incan architecture, as it was built on two mountains, in a strategic place that visually dominates the whole valley.
In its time, Ollantaytambo was a military, religious and agricultural complex. The entrance to the city was made through a door called Punku-punku with a prestigious legend. Then, one starts climbing up rigorously traced stairways and on top, there is the masterwork of Incan architects and stone cutters. Ollantaytambo is the only Incan city that is still almost intact and its houses still serve as homes in which live the descendants of that great culture.
For visitors, we recommend they would take a walk around the villages’ urban area, where “chicherias” (Local “pub” or tavern where “chicha” is being served) are abundant, along with exquisite trapezoidal door styles. The city’s design, its axes, urban structure, the beauty of its volumes and the contrasts between light and shadow attract the visitor. The main church has a façade with six pink granite monoliths brought from some other place and perfectly fit in the stone wall.
If you come to visit Machu Picchu, to take the train you have to stay here and there is many options you can take: